Photos: Minneapolis to Latvia

I am in Madona, Latvia and I race a 10k skate mass start in an hour and 45 minutes.  Since my last blog I have raced in Minneapolis, spent another week in a basement room recovering from a whole ‘nother cold, and subsequently traveled to Latvia.  Here’s the lowdown: picture format.

The Minneapolis Tour de Twin kicked off slowly for me: I got 8th place in the 5k skate and felt pretty lethargic.  Rosie had a great one though... blowing us all away by V2ing all but one uphill.

The Minneapolis Tour de Twin kicked off slowly for me: I got 8th place in the 5k skate and felt pretty lethargic.  Rosie had a great one though… blowing us all away by V2ing all but one uphill.

I wasn't ready to fly to Latvia on time because I was still sick.  This resulted in three days at an airport hotel near the MOA (Mall of America).  My second morning run took me through the deserted amusement park in the mall... it wasn't open at 9am.

I wasn’t ready to fly to Latvia on time because I was still sick.  This resulted in three days at an airport hotel near the MOA (Mall of America).  My second morning run took me through the deserted amusement park in the mall… it wasn’t open at 9am.

 Loving it!
 My favorite ride!  Paul Bunyan's log chute.
 There were a couple of new roller coasters that I really enjoyed... my last visit had been as a 12 year-old.  Luckily they still had the log chute!

Don’t worry, I came back when it was open.

My gate number was so auspicious that I had to get a photo (albeit an unfocused one).  Unfortunately the flight that I switched to out of Minneapolis was entirely full.  Trying to sleep on a 9hr flight in an aisle seat without letting by-passers bump your head? Yikes.

My gate number was so auspicious that I had to get a photo (albeit an unfocused one).  Unfortunately the flight that I switched to out of Minneapolis was entirely full.  Trying to sleep on a 9hr flight in an aisle seat without letting by-passers bump your head? Yikes.

The Amsterdam airport is bustling and full of life- even at 6AM when I got there.  I spotted this glowing purple face on the wall and it really reminded me of someone... I think it's the actor in Curb Your Enthusiasm.  What do you think?

The Amsterdam airport is bustling and full of life- even at 6AM when I got there.  I spotted this glowing purple face on the wall and it really reminded me of someone… I think it’s the actor in Curb Your Enthusiasm.  What do you think?

Stroopwaffle temptation!  I didn't load up on them because I already had so many things, but if you haven't tried these yet you need to do so ASAP.

Stroopwaffle temptation!  I didn’t load up on them because I already had so many things, but if you haven’t tried these yet you need to do so ASAP.

I hate it when the seats have arm-rests at my gate.  6AM after 4 hours of sleep and it's still 12AM in MN?  I found a tricky way to sleep with them, involving cuddling with one and putting my leg through another, but later found some reclining chairs that did the job much better.

I hate it when the seats have arm-rests at my gate.  6AM after 4 hours of sleep and it’s still 12AM in MN?  I found a tricky way to sleep with them, involving cuddling with one and putting my leg through another, but later found some reclining chairs that did the job much better.

The Riga airport is surprisingly polished.  The terminal is all dark granite and light wood... but once you get out of customs it looks like this.  I don't know what the point of this commercial is, but it certainly caught my eye!

The Riga airport is surprisingly polished.  The terminal is all dark granite and light wood… but once you get out of customs it looks like this.  I don’t know what the point of this commercial is, but it certainly caught my eye!

Jennie and I invented the quad-pod... a skier-specific selfie-taking device. Behold the unholy swix-oneway union!

Jennie and I invented the quad-pod… a skier-specific selfie-taking device. Behold the unholy swix-oneway union!

One fruit of the unholy union... it looks like it worked out pretty well! From left it's Anika Miller, Sophie Caldwell, Jennie Bender, Caitlin Patterson, and me.

One fruit of the unholy union… it looks like it worked out pretty well! From left it’s Anika Miller, Sophie Caldwell, Jennie Bender, Caitlin Patterson, and me.

Jennie's torture-rolling device. I suppose those knobby bits are good for your muscles, but...

Jennie’s torture-rolling device. I suppose those knobby bits are good for your muscles, but…

This was the kind of snow we dealt with in the classic race yesterday- zeroes for sure!  The part where it rolled itself up into cinnamon buns if you pushed it downhill was pretty cool.  It also liked to stick to your skis... but that's another story.

This was the kind of snow we dealt with in the classic race yesterday- zeroes for sure!  The part where it rolled itself up into cinnamon buns if you pushed it downhill was pretty cool.  It also liked to stick to your skis… but that’s another story.

P.S. I just finished racing.  I didn’t feel very fit, but if anything will make me fitter it’s racing on hilly courses with fast people!  Now we’re driving to Joulumae, Estonia where the trails are quirky, the food is Estonian, and the internet is patchy. Two sprints in a row though, it’s going to be fun!

From the race today...  D-Norris kicking some butt

From the race today…  D-Norris kicking some butt

Eric Packer hanging onto the pack as they come through the stadium... (photo taken from our front porch, how convenient!)

Eric Packer hanging onto the pack as they come through the stadium… (photo taken from our front porch, how convenient!)

Anika and Caitlin watching from the porch

Anika and Caitlin watching from the porch

I just wanted to illustrate how awesome these cute little cabins are: this is the staircase inside.  Both Latvian places that I have stayed boasted beautiful wood interiors and creative stairways.  Love it!

I just wanted to illustrate how awesome these cute little cabins are: this is the staircase inside.  Both Latvian places that I have stayed boasted beautiful wood interiors and creative stairways.  Love it!

P.P.S Reese kicked some serious butt yesterday!  I knew he was a distance racer, but it’s really exciting to see all the same!

Thanks for reading!